We had such a successful camp this year. We had 118 kids registered; 87 to hunt and 28 for the conservation portion of the camp. 23 of our young hunters killed turkey and all of the saw or heard turkeys gobbling in the woods. Two of our young hunters even killed a coyote.
Youth Outdoors Unlimited staff put on together an awesome camp. They provided the food and opportunity for families to bring their kids into the outdoors. All they had to do was show up, eat, camp and hunt!
Arizona Game and Fish put on a few short seminars on a variety of topics including turkey biology, trapping and calling. They set up a 3-D archery range and the kids got to shoot bows.
Our chapter along with the Arizona State Chapter provided mentors, pushpin calls, and goody bags for the hunters. Our chapter provided two youth shotguns to be raffle to some lucky hunter...free.
The camp was at the Sheep Corral near Greens Peak so many local sportsman came to the are and volunteered their time to mentor kids. Thanks everyone.
Others donated many raffle items so each child got a prize.
This camp was so much fun.
THANKS TO EVERYONE WHO PARTICIPATED AND VOLUNTEERED TO MAKE THIS A SUCCESSFUL EXPERIENCE FOR OUR NEXT GENERATION OF OUTDOORSMEN AND WOMEN!!!!
Gerry Perry: Hunting benefits Arizona
During our end-of-year holidays, many choose to consume beasts and fowl harvested by hunting.
Much of the reason for this is contained in the increasing amount of evidence that consuming meat from wildlife provides a healthy, lean-meat diet, untainted with chemicals to increase size or growth rates.
America’s and Arizona’s hunters have recently been participating in the annual ritual of regulated hunting seasons, harvesting nature’s surplus of wildlife to feed friends and family and to reconnect with nature’s ecosystems in a meaningful way.
Their efforts fuel an economy in this state with more than $342 million in expenditures that support jobs in rural and urban locations. The economic effect of recreational hunting in Arizona alone surpasses many of our state’s largest employers.
In addition, Arizona’s hunters provide almost all the funding for wildlife-management programs. General taxes do not provide funds for wildlife management; rather, hunters’ expenditures for licenses, tags, and equipment provide that funding.
Current classic examples include the ongoing effort to re-establish desert bighorn sheep in the Catalina Mountains with transplants from other Arizona populations of bighorns. Another example is the successful reintroduction of Gould’s wild turkeys into all our local sky islands. All of the expense to do so is funded by hunter user fees and donations by private organizations.
The great abundance of our nation’s wildlife, many species brought back from near-extinction, is a model much admired throughout the world and has been made possible by regulated hunting.
As we continue to celebrate this holiday season, let’s enjoy nature’s bounty and remember the contributions of Arizona’s hunters to our economy and diversity of wildlife on our landscapes.
Gordon Douglas: Hunting by any other name is still killing animals
It’s hard not to chuckle at how hard some people have to work to not say something. A great example is Gerry Perry’s Dec. 23 guest opinion, “Hunting benefits Arizona.”
He extols the virtues of “harvesting nature’s surplus” and “reconnecting with nature’s ecosystems in a meaningful way.” You’d almost think he was talking about catching apples falling from a tree or hiking a wilderness. What he’s desperately avoiding are the words shooting, killing, wounding or suffering. That “meaningful connection” he’s talking about is going into an ecosystem, finding an animal and killing it.
Even the use of the word hunting is basically a way to avoid describing the actual intent of the activity. Photographers, naturalists and those who enjoy observing wildlife all “hunt” for wild animals. What sets “hunters” apart is killing the animals once they find them.
He notes game may be killed for food, but does not acknowledge that many animals are not eaten but are killed for trophies, so the hunter can brag “I killed that,” or are just killed for the fun of it. Those of us who eat meat recognize it is necessary to kill animals for that purpose, but we call the place for that a slaughterhouse, not a chicken collection center or cattle aggregation area.
He correctly points out how hunters provide funding for wildlife management. What he doesn’t say is that through this funding mechanism hunters essentially control how wildlife is managed.
Public lands and their wildlife are operated as a shooting preserve for hunters. Rather than a responsibility of all Arizonans, game animals are looked at as the private property of hunters to be exploited to the maximum extent possible. Natural predators are usually reduced or eliminated, since the value of animals is measured in the number of targets and carcasses for hunters.
He lauds hunting as making it possible to bring back many species from near extinction, which is a mind-boggling reversal of reality. The species were nearly made extinct by hunting. Species are not saved by killing; they are saved by not killing. Animals can be saved for their intrinsic value, instead of bred to be slaughtered for pleasure. The endangered species act was not passed so we could shoot pandas.
A few other items carefully avoided in the piece are the number of people accidentally killed or wounded in hunting accidents, the number of children killed or wounded in accidents from hunting weapons carelessly left in homes, and the general gun carnage in our nation fueled in part by the fanatical resistance of many hunters to any sort of reasonable restrictions on guns of any type.
Hunting involves the use of lethal weapons, and that always carries a tragic price.
Much money is indeed spent on hunting, but this money would be spent in other ways if not for hunting. These other ways could well provide even more significant benefits to our state.
America has a centuries-old hunting tradition. In all likelihood that tradition will continue into the foreseeable future. But in the meantime, let’s stop playing word games, honestly face what we are doing, and recognize the costs as well as benefits.
Donna Van Vlack: The Truth About Hunting.
As an ardent sportswoman (female huntress, for those who may think I’m trying to hide my true nature) I find Gerry Perry’s December 23, 2013 guest opinion to be spot on. However, I object to Mr. Douglas’ inference that my respectful use of less graphic terminology somehow is an indication of my denial of the nature of my main avocation and passion in life.
First of all, hunting certainly and undeniably involves killing. It also involves many outdoor skills and a fair amount of legal/ethical acumen to understand the voluminous regulations governing the activity. Yes, we hunters willingly regulate ourselves and abhor those who violate these laws.
In every single historic instance of wildlife being pushed to extinction or near extinction by hunting, the activity was completely unregulated at the time by the various state and federal governments. Since the Presidency of Teddy Roosevelt many animal species have been brought back from the brink of extinction and are now legally hunted. Examples include bison, Rocky Mountain elk, Gould’s turkey, and black bear. However, given the extent of human impact on our American ecosystems to believe or even hope that historic numbers of wildlife will benefit from NOT hunting is naive. Just consider the historically accurate portrayal of bison in the movie “Dances with Wolves.” Virtually every Midwest city and farm would be decimated from the millions strong herds of bison as they migrated and stampeded their territory.
Not only MAY game be killed as food, in virtually every single instance it IS killed as food. To do otherwise is felonious. That does not negate the taking of inedible portions of the game animal for trophies.
Even slaughterhouses are prone to inhumane treatment of animals, all in the name of profit and efficiency. We are all responsible to insure livestock and wildlife alike are humanely killed. Those of us who hunt recognize the need to kill humanely and strive to do so every time we pull the trigger. Aside from purchasing meat in the sterile environment of our supermarkets and fast-food franchises, what does the average citizen do to ensure the process was dignified and respectful of the livestock?
As for the safety of hunting, the 2008 National Safety Council, reports that actual injuries requiring medical attention for baseball, football, soccer, golf and a host of other “safe” activities are far greater, in every category, than the actual safest of all – hunting. Our children are 10 times more likely to be hurt on the playground than when hunting.
Yes hunters exert considerable control over the process of wildlife management as the main funding source of the process. Public lands and their wildlife are managed by hunters and professionally trained wildlife biologists. Simply put, who better to assume this responsibility. I challenge Mr. Douglas to name a single multi-million dollar a year activity that is not controlled to a significant degree by the holder of the purse strings.
Yes, we have a centuries-old hunting heritage in America. Certainly, no amount of bickering based on misinformation will change this. Costs are assumed by the hunters for the benefit of every birdwatcher, nature lover, hiker, and citizen of our country. We do this willingly and without regret. I have passed this on to my children and grandchildren and without a doubt, they will pass it on to their children and grandchildren.